Finding the right business partner is an important task, however, many people can jump into this without really considering the qualities that they want in a partnership. Usually, the quality of your life depends on the quality of your relationships, and I think this is true for business as well – the success of your business and the fulfillment and satisfaction you get from it can depend on the people you work with.
Last year I was offered a publishing contract with Your Stories Matters, and the decision to accept was an easy one. Afterwards, I thought about the reasons why I felt that the partnership would work and listed them below:
1.Does it make sense and feel right? Before I was offered the contract, I was contacting publishers that were not a perfect fit – I knew this but did my best to find the closest fit possible. When the publisher did come along, it made perfect sense – they wanted to publish stories written by neurodivergent people about their experiences in an attempt to help others, and that is exactly what I wanted to do with my book!
2. Do you both have the same values and vision? It’s important to talk about this to make sure that you are both aligned and heading in the same direction. Having the same values will help you to navigate the journey and make decisions based on what is mutually important to you both.
3. Do you trust that the person has integrity? I normally get a sense of this through meeting them, but you can also try to assess this through their words and actions. You can also speak to other people that they have worked with. Being very clear, transparent and honest in their communication is also a sign of good integrity.
4. Do you both need each other? For example, I know that being dyslexic, I need an editor for my book. I also need a second opinion and person to give me feedback. I also don’t know about publishing and selling books, and I certainly would appreciate a hand with marketing. The publishing company is an independent publisher, and just about to launch their adult range of books– I have definitely lived an interesting life! And they need stories like mine and committed authors! This one sounds obvious, but not everyone thinks about it. The return should be just as important to each partner – and often represent a complimentary skill set.
5. Do you both value and respect each other? Would you both put the business relationship above your ego? and treat each other how you would like to be treated?
If this sounds like a tall order – being clear on what you want and don’t want will help you to look for and filter out what is right for you – it might involve some compromise on what is less important. However, try practicing and living these principles yourself first, and then see what happens!
If you found this article helpful – please share it!
My book about living with dyslexia and my journey in setting up Radical Intelligence, a neurodiverse innovator, www.radicalintelligence.co, will be published at the end of 2018. You can follow me on twitter @radical_intel